Lowe slightly injured ...Boyd to face committee
Dec 29
It was reported that recalled player Onandi Lowe was slightly injured in an auto accident recently. Lowe's injuries were minor and not expected to affect the player. Lowe was recalled to the National team after a four year suspension he was serving was lifted by the JFF. Another recent recall Walter Boyd will have to face the disciplinary committee for incidents in the recently contested National Premier League game between Arnett Gardens and Waterhouse.

It has been confirmed that players involved in the Adopt-A-Player Program will receive between J$75,000 and J$100,000 monthly. Individual payments were not available at this timeas assesment continues. The Adopt-A-Player Program allows corporations to sponsor member of the National Squad.

Reggae Boyz has busy schedule in preparation for World Cup
Dec 19
It has been announced that the Reggae Boyz will travel to Brazil in early January for three weeks for a series of games in that country. They will then return to Jamaica's National Stadium for a game against Sweden on January 29. Jamaica will then face Brazil in the Gold Cup tournament at the Orange Bowl in Miami Florida on February 3rd. The Reggae Boyz will then travel to the Los Angeles Coliseum for engagements with El Salvador and Guatemala in the same tournament on February7th and 8th. The group will then embark on an European tour for possible games against Wales, Austria, Denmark and Poland. The team will finally set up camp in Charmont in early June for their first world cup encounter against Croatia in Lens on June 14.

Marcus Gayle (Wimbledon) and Frank Sinclair (Chelsea), new addition to The Reggae Boyz
Dec 12
With mixed reaction from the Jamaican people, Rene Simones named English based players , Marcus Gayle (Wimbledon) and Frank Sinclair (Chelsea) to the Jamaican squad. Rene Simones stated that no one is assured a spot and that playing in England does not mean a player will make the team. He also stated that the door is not closed for anyone, and for other players who wish to try out for the team, not to lose hope.

Boyd and Lowe back on squad
KINGSTON, Jamaica, Dec 11
It was announced today at an official press conference, that Onandi Lowe and Walter Boyd are back in the national squad for duties at the world cup next year. Both players had been suspended for different reasons and an apology was required from them. Many Jamaicans have long called for the return of these two talented players to the squad.

Comments from the Coaches in Group H
Coach: René Simoes "We are glad to be here as newcomers to the World Cup. We are a pretty strong side, even if we do lack experience compared with Argentina or Croatia. But I'm very happy with this group. The group containing Nigeria, Bulgaria, Paraguay and Spain is certainly the toughest. But in my opinion, we can beat any side, even Japan. Japanese football is making great strides. Their game is very fast thanks to the contribution made by the Brazilians in the championship."
Coach: Carl Brown said "We have a very good chance here. We will surprise these teams. They haven't spent any time looking at the Jamaican team, but we have been looking at them. "The Argentina game is the one Jamaica will spend most time on and think about the things that they want to do,"

Coach: Daniel Passarella said "I'm delighted. It's a really good draw for my squad. Our aim is to go very far, but I don't want us to be labeled favorites. I've experience of the Croatian players and I fear them. The schedule is nicely spaced out. Batitusta is an excellent player, but I'll decide later whether to select him. Japan has made great progress. We beat them 5-1 two years ago. But now they've got a good team. On paper, we've got the best side in the group, but we'll have to prove it on the pitch. We know nothing at all about Jamaica except that they have a Brazilian coach and play football well".

Coach: Takeshi Okada said "We are glad to have avoided an African team. They are difficult to play against. Lots of teams are here for the first time, like Jamaica. That's great. I'm delighted to be playing Argentina which is one of the best teams in the world. I think that the games during the competition will continue to be played in a friendly spirit. We will do our best."

Coach: Miroslav Blazevic said "I'm delighted with the draw. We needed a break and we got one. Thanks to the draw, our ambitions are a little more assertive than before. If you exclude France, Argentina and Brazil, I think I can venture that we are no less favorites than the other teams.

MARSEILLE, France, Dec 4
Dates and Location for Jamaica's First Round Games:
Jamaica v Croatia, Lens, June 14
Argentina v Jamaica, Paris-Parc des Princes, June 21
Japan v Jamaica, Lyon, June 26

Group A Group B: Group C Group D
Brazil Italy France Spain
Scotland Chile South Africa Nigeria
Morocco Cameroon Saudi Arabia Paraguay
Norway Austria Denmark Bulgaria
Group E Group F Group G Group H
Netherlands Germany Romania Argentina
Belgium United States Colombia Japan
South Korea Yugoslavia England Jamaica
Mexico Iran Tunisia Croatia

Rest of the World Team defeat Europe 5-2
MARSEILLE, France, Dec 4
The gala FIFA match between Europe (2) and the Rest of the World (5)saw seven goals and lots of action as Ronaldo showed that he is definitely the top baller in the world today scoring 2 and assisting in the other three. The Reggae Boyz Deon Burton, with a lot of similarities to Ronaldo, showed that he is a dangerous player and was unfortunate not to have hit the net also.
Scorers: Europe - Marius Lacatus (Romania) 1, Zinedine Zidane (France) 61....Rest of the World - Antony De Avila (Colombia) 17, Ronaldo (Brazil) 22, 43 Gabriel Batistuta (Argentina) 31, 37

Reggae Boyz played the most qualifying matches
KINGSTON, Jamaica, Dec 3
In Recently published world cup qualifying facts, Jamaica' Reggae Boyz was listed as the team that played the most matches: Jamaica 20 played, Won 11, Drew 6 Lost 3 and scored a total of 24 goals and gave up 15.
Other facts and figures on the World Cup qualifying competition includes-Competing nations: 172,Total Goals: 1,922 , Average number of goals per match: 2.99, Highest score: Iran 17 Maldive Islands, Goals by Confederation-UEFA Goals: 667, South America: Goals: 184, CONCACAF Goals: 295, Africa: Goals: 91, Asia: Goals: 452, Oceania: Goals: 85, Yellow cards: Total: 2,142 (avg. per match 3.3), Red cards: Total: 162 (avg. per match 0.3) .

Delegation off to Europe
KINGSTON, Jamaica, Dec 1
JFF President Capt. Horace Burrell along with Technical Director Rene Simoes and the National Team's GM Horace Reid will travel to England, France, Italy and Germany in preparation for World Cup '98. In England the delegation will be looking at and meeting with team with Jamaican Players for them to evaluate. They will also stop in France for the World Cup Draw on December 4 . They will then continue on to Italy and Germany in order to set up camp in preparation for the World Cup. The team is presently taking a break before they start a 3 week tour of Brazil as part of their preparation. In Jamaica, the airways are a blaze about the prospects of English players joining the team.

Coach to take look at oversea players
KINGSTON, Jamaica, Nov 27
Technical director Rene Simones and Burrell are going to England to watch to the match between Derby County and Chelsea. They are interested in the players that have faxed in their resume to the JFF lately. many Jamaicans at home are not in agreement with more foreign based players joining the team as they think the local lads have worked very hard and played their hearts out and should not at this point fell treatened by thoughts of new oversea players.The JFF says it wants the best Jamaican players available at home and abroad to play.

Jamaica/Trinidad friendly ends in draw
KINGSTON, Jamaica, Nov 24
The Reggae boyz played to a nil all draw in their friendly with Trinidad and Tobago the reigning Caribbean champions on Sunday. Weather conditions was poor and and the field sloppy as rain fell during the lackluster game. Both teams were not at full strength as many foreign players were away on duty with their regular clubs.

Reggae Boyz to play in Gold Cup
KINGSTON, Jamaica, Nov 23
At a recent CONCACAF meeting, the officials ruled that Jamaica be invited to next years Gold Cup tournament to be held in the USA. This is good news for Jamaican soccer fans as the Reggae Boyz will play against the World Champions Brazil in their first game February 3rd. Jamaicans has always had a warm spot for Brazilian soccer and this will be a great moment for the Reggae Boyz.

Burton to play for World IX team
KINGSTON, Jamaica, Nov 22
Jamaica and Derby County's striker Deon Burton was called up to play for the World IX team which plays against an Europe XI team on Dec. 4, 1997, in Marseille, France. It's part of the celebration planned on the day of the World Cup draw. The teams will consist of one player from each of the 32 finalists.

More foreign based players possible
KINGSTON, Jamaica, Nov 22
In a recent interview Capt. Burrell said that the JFF wants the best players available at home and abroad to play for Jamaica and that they are looking at other foreign based players including some top players in the English League. The team presently has four English based players, Robbie Earl, Fitzroy Simpson and Paul Hall. This is a very good move as all the other countries do this. Other positive moves by the JFF includes the "Adopt-a-player" plan that involves local industries sponsoring players.

Jamaica moves one spot in World Ranking
KINGSTON, Jamaica, Nov 21
Jamaica moved up one spot to 39 in the recent FIFA/Coca-Cola World Ranking. Trinidad and Tobago has fallen on place and are currently ranked 58th . Other regional ranked teams are Mexico (11th), USA (29th) and Costa Rica (52nd).

England backs out on promise to Reggae Boyz
KINGSTON, Jamaica, Nov 20
Jamaica's national football learned today that England had backed down on their promise to play them in a friendly. Jamaica's Capt. Horace Burrell, President of the Jamaica Football Federation said that England had promised the team a match at Wembly were they to qualify as part of the preparation process. Jamaica is scheduled to play Brazil in February and Norway in May. England is now reported to be playing against Argentina instead and its widely speculated that they do not want to run the risk of defeat against the Reggae Boyz at this time.

Jamaica and Trinidad and Tobago to play Friendly
KINGSTON, Jamaica,
Nov 19

World Cup qualifiers Jamaica will play Trinidad and Tobago in a friendly game in Port of Spain on Sunday. T&T is the other soccer powerhouse in the Caribbean and this will be a good test for T&T in preparing for the Gold Cup in February next year. Oversea stars Dwight Yorke and Russell Latapy will not play due to club commitments but Clint Marcelle of Barnsley and Anthony Rougier should be available for the game along with two U.S based players, Stern John (New Orleans) and Ansil Elcock (Columbus) and Canadian based Terry St. Louis (Toronto). In previous meetings between the two teams, Jamaica beat T&T 6-1 and T&T won 4-2 on penalty kicks in the Shell/Umbro cup. It is unlikely that Jamaica's English-born players Robbie Earle and Deon Burton will be available for the game.

Jamaica's Reggae Boyz advance to World Cup

KINGSTON, Jamaica, Nov 16

Jamaica made soccer history on Sunday by becoming the first English-speaking Caribbean nation ever to qualify for the World Cup finals. Jamaica played to a 0-0 tie with Mexico."This is undoubtedly the greatest day in Jamaica's sporting history " said Prime Minister P.J. Patterson and the government declared Monday a national holiday in celebration of the achievement.

Rivals El Salvador who were fighting for the final spot loss 4-2 to the United States in Boston. Mexico, the United States and Jamaica are the three CONCACAF qualifiers. A capacity crowd of over 33,000 in yellow and green shirts began chanting "France, France" before the final whistle thus starting the celebration. Jamaica's two television stations devoted most of their programming to the match, and showed the team's qualifying games on the road to France.

Jamaica, who have not lost at home in three years and has not conceded a goal at home in the World Cup qualifying campaign, played a possession game and at times seemed to be playing for the draw. Jamaica created some good scoring opportunities but wasted them and at most times were the dominant team . Mexico, who has lost to Jamaica twice here, seemed satisfied with the results and happy not to pick up any injuries or red cards.

Island-wide the cars, trucks and buses were sporting Jamaican flags and some supporters have even bolted full-length flags to the hoods of their cars. Many songs have hit the airwaves saluting the new heros. Prime Minister Patterson have promised a "fitting national celebration" would be held in honor of the team.

The only other Caribbean nations that have had ever qualified for the World Cup is Cuba in 1934 and Haiti in 1974.

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